What Are Some Low-Maintenance Flooring Options?

Updating the flooring in your home is a great way to update a space and make it look new again. If you’re unsure what kind of floor you want to select, you’ll need to do some research. There are many different options these days. If you get a lot of foot traffic through your home, you’ll want to choose something that is low maintenance. Following are some of the most popular flooring options. 

Engineered Hardwood

Engineered hardwood is a newer product that is a lot more affordable than regular hardwood. It is made from a composite material as well as wood. The boards won’t be as thick as hardwood, and they are produced in a way that allows them to be fitted together very simply. The installation is similar to laminate flooring. This engineered hardwood comes in many different colors, textures and styles. You can find something that will fit your décor very easily. Prices vary quite a bit, and once you get the hang of cleaning this material, you’ll have an easy time of it.

Porcelain Tile

Very similar to ceramic tile, porcelain provides the same look and durability. Both materials are made from clay, but porcelain has a very distinct look to the final product. This is a very durable flooring option that is popularly used in bathrooms, hallways and kitchens. Porcelain tile often has color penetrating throughout, which can help hide any damage to it. The price can vary with certain colors and qualities being more expensive. This is a product that you’ll probably want to have installed by a professional so that the tiles are laid evenly and level. Porcelain tile can withstand some pretty frequent foot traffic, and it requires very minimal maintenance with an occasional wipe.

Linoleum

A lot of people don’t consider linoleum as a flooring option, but in fact, it has come a long way. There are now many different color and pattern options that you can select from. You can even choose a linoleum option that looks very much like tile. Until you get right up to the floor, you won’t know the difference. The big draw is the cost. Linoleum is incredibly affordable. It’s also really durable, and it will hold up well to a lot of traffic. You can wipe it down as frequently as you would like. 

It’s a good idea to head to the store to get an idea of what you like. You can usually purchase a small sample to take home with you. This will allow you to see the flooring in the lighting and space in which you would have it installed.

Do you need some renovation work done on your home? Contact Team Jaworski to see how we can help! 

Know the Dangers of Lead Paint in Your Home

Millions of homes in the US still contain lead paint. Why does this matter? Because not only is lead paint a danger to children, it is dangerous to pregnant women as well, threatening the health and safety of a child in utero. There’s no such thing as a safe level of lead in the home.

Older Homes at Risk

Homes built in the 1970s may contain lead paint, posing a threat to you and your family. Not only is lead common in paint in homes built before 1978 but the soldering found on pipes also often contains lead. You can find out when your home was built, even if it is a rental, by searching the title with the county you reside in. The year a house was built is a matter of public record, so you can find out for free.

Hazardous to Your Health

Lead is a threat to any human who is exposed, including both adults and children. A high level of lead exposure over short periods of time can cause abdominal pain, constipation, fatigue, headache, irritability, loss of appetite, memory loss, weakness and pain or tingling in the hands and/or feet. Longer exposure can lead to kidney damage, brain damage, physical weakness and even death. Since lead can cross through the placental barrier, it can cause nerve damage in an unborn child and even result in miscarriage. It has been proven that lead can infertility in both men and women. Additionally, lead exposure in developing children can have an effect on their ability to learn, causing ADHD and developmental disabilities. Lead presence in your home is a serious matter. However, many don’t even realize that the risk is there for their entire family.

Fixing the Problem

In order to remove lead-based paint, you should never sand or scrape it without wetting it first. Make sure the area is well-ventilated, lay down plastic and wet the paint prior to sanding or scraping. This prevents particles from entering the air within the home. After removing the paint, be sure to wipe down all surfaces with soapy water. Additionally, wash your clothing immediately and immediately shower, using a lot of soap.

When you are ready to paint your home again, be sure you are buying paint that is from a store and/or that it is lead-free. Lead-based paint has been banned for use in homes since 1978, but road and parking lot paint sometimes contain lead. If someone gives you paint and/or the paint is in an unsealed container, be aware that there is no guarantee that the paint is lead-free. Protect yourself and your family and be in the know.

 

If you are repainting your home, we have all the tools to do the job right!

3 Ways to Future-Proof Your Bathroom

When you’re thinking about renovating your bathroom, you need to think beyond just your immediate needs and desires. Your bathroom should be a place that can grow with you and your needs and renovating wisely will save you time and money in the future. To future-proof your bathroom, consider these tips.

Make Your Bathroom Accessible

Including a bar for the shower, a slip-free bathtub, and enough room for a wheelchair are very wise choices when renovating a bathroom. Accessible bathrooms make it easier for you to take in an elderly relative when that time comes. Plus, it helps you prepare in case something happens where you or another family member needs more stability and extra help in the bathroom. You can include a bench so sitting is possible while showering, and you can also make countertops lower, so they are easier to access from a wheelchair. Doing this early means you won’t have to rush into a bathroom renovation when you’re already dealing with whatever situation caused you to require one.

Clean Regularly

Bathrooms may be where we get clean, but they get extremely dirty. Bathroom vanity countertops collect stains from numerous sources, reducing their surface strength. Cabinets can be stained by dripping water and toothpaste, and mud or dirt cover walls and sinks if hand washers don’t do a wipe down after washing their hands. Eventually, this dirt and grime will cost you because you will have to start replacing damaged items. It’s important to clean thoroughly and regularly to prevent wear and tear in the bathroom. Create a consistent cleaning schedule for your bathroom and save money in the future when your counters, sinks, and cabinets hold up because of your care.

Ventilation

Due to the moisture from showers, baths, and sinks, bathrooms need ventilation that will keep mold at bay, so rot doesn’t settle into your house. Having proper ventilation in place from the beginning can save you major cash later. Make sure your bathroom has a bathroom fan that is close enough to the tub or shower to be effective. Use it when the bathroom is steamy and let it fully absorb the moisture in the room. If you can install a window that opens easily, then you will create a simple way to let fresh air in and stale air out of your bathroom. If your bathroom door does not allow for space so steam can slip out of the bathroom, have it replaced. These small changes can make a big difference when it comes to keeping mold away.

Don’t just think of the here and now when renovating your bathroom. Keep the future in your sights and find effective ways to future-proof your bathroom so you can enjoy it now and later.

5 Home Improvement & Remodeling Ideas That Increase Home Value

The purchase of a home is one of the largest investments most families will ever make. It is important to maintain and improve the value of this investment over time. Home improvements are a great way for homeowners to add to the value of their homes. Here are a few ideas to get you started.

Make the Home Larger

The square footage of your home will have a large impact on its value. In fact, the price per square foot is an important tool for real estate agents when they are helping clients consider purchasing a home, using price per square foot as a comparison tool. You will be able to command a higher price for a home with more space. And even when an appraiser does not take added space into account, a prospective buyer will take notice of this feature. One way to add size to your home is to add an additional room. Another idea is to finish the attic or the basement.

Granite Countertops

Most people understand the impact a kitchen has on the ability to sell a home, as well as, the price that can be commended for the home. And when it comes to improvements to a kitchen, perhaps nothing can provide more bang for the buck than granite countertops. Granite is a natural stone that is known for its beauty and durability. Granite countertops will add character and aesthetic appeal to your home while providing you and your family with a convenient and long-lasting surface to perform the needed functions in your kitchen. Kitchen renovations have been proven to add from 80 to 100 percent of the cost of the renovations to the sale price of the home. Kitchens with granite countertops have also proven to command a higher sales price than similar homes. With these facts in mind, it is not difficult to understand how granite countertops can increase the value of your home.

Energy Efficiency

You can add significant value to your home when you make an effort to improve energy efficiency. Borrowers who are approved for energy-efficient mortgages will receive the money to pay for both their new homes and the energy-efficient improvements. Simple improvements that can increase the energy efficiency of your home is double-paned windows, LED lighting, additional attic insulation, and energy-efficient appliances. An improvement that will take a larger investment is placing solar panels on your roof.

Security System

Another surefire way to add value to your home is to install a home security system. In the process, you will provide you and your family with added peace of mind. One way a home security system can add value to your home is the savings gained through insurance companies. In fact, the savings on monthly premiums can be as much as 20 percent when you install a home security system. Buyers will also be willing to spend more money on a home that provides safety to their families. It is a great idea to make sure there are sensors protecting the doors and windows in your home, motion detectors in open spaces, and working smoke detectors if you are considering listing your home for sale. These additions to your home are not expensive and if you’re into DIY home improvement projects, installing the equipment yourself can save you money.

New Paint Job

A good paint job on the exterior of your home will make a good first impression and score a lot of points with potential buyers. One study showed that homeowners can expect about a 50 percent return on their investment after adding a fresh coat of paint to the exterior of their homes. Another study showed that the value of the home can increase by as much as five percent after painting. The curb appeal of your home will be much greater if viewers see no chipped paint or other signs of wear to the exterior of your home. These are simple fixes and should not be allowed to lower your home’s value.

The investment you make in your home will greatly affect the financial future of you and your family. It is important to do what is necessary to protect the value of this investment. The five home improvements above will help you maintain and increase the value of your family home.

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3 Warning Signs You Need a New Roof

Once your roof starts suffering from problems, the countdown clock begins for challenges to other areas of the home. Homeowners must realize that even the best-constructed roof can and will suffer problems at some point. Major weather events like hurricanes and tornadoes are obvious threats to roofs, but damage can occur due to any number of circumstances, though. Be alert to common signs the roof is finished and needs replacing.

It’s Been a While

Age eventually wears a roof down. Years of rain, snow, hail, and wind slowly degrade a roof and its materials. Cracks and imperfections grow worse over time. Minor patch jobs won’t fix things after a while. Now, well-made roofs do last many years. Asphalt shingle roofing has a service life of over 30 years, which makes things easier for homeowners.

Eventually, time will catch up with a roof. Determine the due date for a new roof. Start getting estimates for a new one long before severe age-related wear emerges.

Leaks or Sags

Water coming through the roof is a bad sign. A visible drip isn’t the only sign of such woe. Sagging ceilings indicate a lot of water is pooling. Ignoring the signs of water damage could turn out to be a disastrous decision. Water pouring into the home will rot wood and contribute to mold growth. The damage will continue to grow worse and worse. The property could end up condemned if the water damage passes a certain point. 

Depending on the extent of the damage, a minor fix could stop the leaks. Fixing a loose shingle or patching a hole could solve the problem provided the leak didn’t go on too long. Remember, you want to stop water damage at the earliest point. You also must accept reality, too. If an inspection reveals the leaks result from a severely dilapidated roof, then installing a new roof is likely unavoidable.

A Partial Collapse Occurs

A partial collapse doubtfully reaches a point and stops. A partial collapse will probably turn into a total collapse. As the structure weakens, the roof may not be able to support itself. The resulting chaos could put people’s lives at risk. Consider a partial roof collapse an emergency. Have the roof inspected immediately and take other precautions for safety.

Homeowners should expect something to go wrong with their roof sooner or later. A well-built roof contributes many protective benefits to a property. Qualified roofing pros are capable of putting a new roof on. Know the signs a roof requires replacing. This way, the new roof can go on at the right time. 

Looking to touch up your home’s exterior? Jaworski Painting can help!

How to Select the Right Furniture for Your Living Room

Your living room furniture will see a lot of use, so make sure the fabrics are durable and will serve your household well. Cool leather may be comfortable for some, but others find it cold. Faux suede comes in great colors but may be hard to clean. Make sure the pieces work well for your family and in the space.

Make Sure it Fits Your Space

According to this source, it’s important to make sure to find furniture that fits your space. The primary measurement in picking the right sofa is length. Will it fit from armrest to armrest? However, sofas can also be very deep and take up a lot of floor space from the back of the sofa to the floor. If your room is very small, consider investing in a sofa that’s a bit shorter from hip to knee and a little higher off the floor. This form of seating will still be comfortable if not great for lounging. You can add a plush side chair or chair with ottoman for anyone who needs to put their feet up. Ottomans are also easily portable and many offer storage.

Consider Their Purpose

Depending on the size and layout of your home, you may need some furniture to do double duty. For example, a high-backed chair with a firm but comfortable seat can serve as an office chair or work with a lap desk. If you work from home and like to change up your space, there are coffee tables that can lift up to allow a higher surface to work or dine from. Of course, you and your laptop can go almost anywhere, but the most functional furniture will foster good posture so you can focus on comfort. According to this source, some furniture pieces are comfortable enough to allow for lounging but structured enough to also allow support when working, allowing them to fill multiple roles.

Cleaning

Sectionals sofas are a great place to lay back and watch a movie but hard to vacuum under and around. In addition, if something gets spilled on your sectional, you’re looking at replacing a lot of fabric. If you’ve got little ones in your household or guests who are prone to drips, furniture you can easily wipe up is a good option. In addition, according to this source, you should look for furniture with enough clearance to easily clean under. If you’ve got a robotic vacuum, a sofa and side chairs with at least 5 inches of clearance will keep your floors cleaner. 

Designing your living space can seem like an arduous task sometimes. Finding living room furniture that’s both comfortable and functional does take a little digging. However, if you carefully review each piece for both the length and depth of floor space, you can choose furniture that will suit your needs, offer flexibility and keep you comfortable.

4 Hidden Health Hazards in Your Home You Should Resolve Immediately

Many people do not wish to think about it, but there are multiple things within your home right now that could be serious potential health hazards. Everyday items, rodents, mold, old paint on your walls, or even cabinets that you think are just dirty can be very serious. But what are the biggest potential health hazards?

Mold

Mold is a fungus that grows and spreads very easily and can become airborne and be inhaled by anyone in the home. This is such a hazard because mold could happen potentially anywhere in the home. From old paint on walls, in cabinets, in the bathroom, your water closet, or even in your food pantry, mold can sprout up and cause harm. There are hundreds of varieties, many of which are very dangerous to humans and pets. Being vigilant and clearing out your mold is imperative. Clean regularly, throw away old food, make sure everything’s dry, and always check for mold growth to help prevent it. If it’s really bad, you may even want to repaint the walls inside your home after cleaning them.

Carbon Monoxide

With many colorful nicknames, like the invisible death, carbon monoxide is a deadly gas that’s colorless and odorless, according to Silent Shadow. Old heaters and stoves, lawnmowers, engines, generators, and even cigarettes and cigars can emit carbon monoxide. If you have a fuel-burning heater, for instance, it’s vital that you check it regularly for leaks. If you have an attached garage, make sure it’s sealed off from the home. This is a huge potential hazard.

Household Pests

Common household pests may initially just be annoying, making noises and chewing things up, but they’re also a huge health risk. According to Insight Pest Solutions, common household rodents include the house mouse, the roof rat, the deer mouse, and the Norway rat. You might not know it, but rodents like mice and rats can carry a wide range of influenza strains and other potentially deadly bacteria. Setting traps or hiring an exterminator is the best way to get rid of infestations, while sonic devices can deter them from coming back. 

Cleaning Supplies

Toxic chemicals are dangerous to keep around the home, as children can easily get into them. According to Tersano, cleaning with some products like bleach-based and other harsh chemicals can also leave a residue that children and pets can get into. To resolve this, make sure that your cleaning supplies with harsh chemicals are stored in areas that are inaccessible to children and pets. If you’re worried about the residue from the chemicals on your kitchen counter, prepare your food on a cutting board so the residue doesn’t get on the food. If you’re especially worried about it, you can clean with organic or nontoxic cleaners instead.

Though these health hazards may seem scary at first, they are easily taken care of with a little bit of effort. It’s important to be vigilant and protect your home and health against potential dangers. If you see one of the above health hazards in your home, make sure that you take care of them as soon as possible so you and your family can be safe.

3 Tips for Staging Your Home for Sale

When you’re selling your home, you want it to look the best that it can for potential buyers. Staging your home can help give your home that little extra touch that could persuade someone to buy it. Here are three things you can do to stage your home that can make it look amazing.

Start with the Outside

When it’s time to put your home on the market you want it to invite everyone, especially prospective buyers, in. Make the front door obvious by painting it in an eye-catching tone. Best Life suggests putting out planters and solar lights to brighten the path to your front door and encourage visitors to enter the space. Don’t forget to check your porch light and consider adding foyer lighting if possible, both for comfort and safety.

Keep it Simple and Generic

One of the reasons that you like your home is that it’s loaded with things that you care about. To sell your home, you need to arrange it so the prospective buyer can see it populated with things they care about. You may choose to have the home professionally staged by someone well versed in interior design, or you may decide to do it yourself. Think of your home as a backdrop for a variety of styles and colors. According to Real Estate Elevated, being too specific in style when staging a home can get in the way of appealing to a wider variety of potential buyers. If you choose to do your own staging and sale prep, make sure to put plenty of time into both staging and cleaning the space.

Use a Light Palette

If you choose to do any painting or change out carpets, drapes or flooring, try to go with pale, unobtrusive tones. MHM Professional Staging suggests brightening the space with removable items, such as pillows, throws, or fresh flowers. Remove all personal items to allow prospective buyers the chance to see their belongings in the space. Consider renting a storage unit to stash personal items, clothing from over-crowded closets or kitchen clutter. By the time you’re done staging, your goal should be to leave lots of open spaces, a comfortable walkway and a neutral décor that could be personalized by anyone.

Staging your home can shorten the sale time and drive traffic into the space. If there are homes for sale in the area, take tours to see what they’ve done. Your space doesn’t have to be perfect, but you have a better chance of selling your home quickly if it compares well against other homes in the area.

If your house paint needs an upgrade before potential buyers come to see it, We Love Painting can help give your home a whole new look!

3 Potentially-Dangerous Home “Improvements” You Should Be Aware Of

If you want to increase the value of your home, you may be thinking of making some home improvement additions. These could include an upper story for your garage, a renovated kitchen or bathroom, or attractive landscaping. Some additions may cause more harm than good. Here are three that you should be aware of and the remedies that go with them.

Wall-to-Wall Carpeting

When a house is listed for sale, new wall-to-wall carpeting may sound like a great selling point. You may have gone to a huge expense to install new carpeting in the hope it will increase the value of your home. This may be true for some people, but today, the dangers of wall-to-wall carpeting have become well known and thus many people look for wooden, tiled or painted non-slip flooring. Carpeting is manufactured with toxic chemicals that can cause allergic reactions in some, especially children. The carpet is also a catch-all for pathogens and allergens from pets and the bottoms of shoes.

Swimming Pool

Swimming pools are considered a great asset for any home. They provide exercise and recreation at any time of the year. However, if you are considering adding a swimming pool to your home there are some safety features you should consider. There are several common injuries that can happen at a pool. One of the most common is slipping and falling because the pool is not surrounded by non-slip flooring. If the pool does not have the proper safety features, it may not be considered an asset, especially for families with young children. A surrounding fence with a child-proof latch is the first thing to add; it is often required in areas with attractive nuisance regulations. You can even put alarms on the doors that lead to the pool area as well as on the gate and latches.

Basement Renovation

If your home has a basement and it is just going to waste as a dump-all location, you may be able to renovate it into a great family room or office. While you have addressed the moisture issues and used the right kind of flooring, you may not have thought of an exit plan. To be safe, you need more than one egress route. Adding an extra window or door at the early stages may solve the problem and save a life.

When considering an addition to your home, make sure that you think about whether it will add value to your home or not. This could be especially important to consider if you are planning on selling your house soon. Whatever you end up doing, make sure you keep safety factors in mind like the ones mentioned above to ensure your family’s safety in your home. 

4 Home Design Trends to Watch Out for in 2019

Having a house that looks current can make you feel better about your home and give you something to show to your guests. Check out this handy-dandy list of some of the latest trends in home decor that 2019 has to offer.

Natural Materials

If 2018 emphasized tech and metal, then 2019 is doing an about-face. This year is emphasizing natural materials, such as stone and wood, and the decor is focusing more on our relationship with nature. Plant life is a focus, and plenty of daylight illuminates spaces for a natural aesthetic. Eclecticism that becomes overdone is on the decline, even if it is still somewhat present in some interiors. Functionality is also taking center stage, with spaces that are paired down so that the lines are cleaner.

Open Concept

If you’ve always loved open-concept design, feel comfortable in the knowledge that this floor plan isn’t going away. An open plan is ideal for entertaining guests and hosting parties. This type of design also makes rooms feel spacious and comfortable for you and your family on a regular Tuesday night. You can spend time with your family when you’re prepping food in the kitchen and they’re in the living space when you have an open concept ground floor. So, if you’re looking at real estate or planning a remodel, consider this type of floor plan.

Statement Furnishings

Many of the furnishings of 2019 come in bold colors, such as purple or green, and they’re made with luxurious materials. If you’re not ready to have an entire couch upholstered in velvet, you can still incorporate the trend into your living room or bedroom by having a single chair or even just a few throw pillows made of the material. These statement pieces look stunning against a background of contrasting color.

Copper and Brass

Brushed nickel accents had their moment, but now the trend is turning toward the warm hues of copper and brass. You can use these metals for your kitchen pulls and knobs, or pick up a few decorative objects for the living room or kitchen. A coal scuttle by the fireplace is the perfect place to add some brass. If you want to bring these materials into the kitchen even more, you can also include hammered metal sinks.

Trends come and go, but you can change objects and design a little bit at a time to have a house that always looks up-to-date.

A nice addition to any home is an exterior paint job, adding a fresh and updated style. Let Jaworski Painting help you in all of your home painting needs.